The concept of forgive and forget is a difficult one and no longer works in today’s society. It behooves us all to learn to forgive, but forgetting, as so many have apparently done, leaves us exposed to committing the same mistake all over again and makes the mistake all the more difficult to forgive.
Forgiving someone else for their slights and failures in our expectations of them is considered to be a great virtue. We look at them, once we have gotten over the initial shock, anger, and pain of how we felt, and realize that they are merely human, just like us and deserve a second chance, sometimes many more.
Why then is it so hard for some to forgive themselves? Is it not true that you are also human and you deserve a second chance, sometimes many more, to correct the mistakes that you have made throughout life? Why are you any less deserving of forgiveness than anyone else? It is harder to accept our own faults than it is the faults of others. Does that mean that you expect more of yourself than you do others? Are others less worthy of higher expectations than you expect of yourself?
You are molded from the same material as all other humans and you have at the very least three major parts to your being – physical, mental, and emotional; there is a fourth for some – spiritual. It is in the mental and the emotional that the decision is made to forgive. No one human deserves more forgiveness from you than you yourself. If you cannot learn to forgive yourself for your own disappointments and failures, then you will find it is difficult for others to forgive you as well.
Never forget, for the experience is one that you need not repeat if you learned the lesson presented to you. Forgiveness is a virtue, just as is patience, and no one, including you, deserves to be punished for a momentary lack of thought or strength. Don’t lower your expectations of yourself, including the act of being able to forgive yourself just as you would anyone else.
(originally posted in 2006)